Emily Gosling
14:31 10th October 2006

Metronomy

Be it Thamesbeat (a ‘W’ postcode and DIY hairdo and you’re in) or New Yorkshire, the music press are always at the ready with a New Musical revolution to get our mitts on. The one their currently force-feeding our apparently universally gurning chops is, yes, you guessed it ‘nu-rave’. And although their irrepressible need for genre creation may make you want to shove your brand new glow sticks up their journalistic arses, on this, they may be on to something.This is because ladies and gentlemen, finally ‘the kids’ are dancing again. This is something Metronomy whole-heatedly approves of:  “I think I’ve been to too many gigs, especially electronic music where no one’s got a smile on their face. At the same time it sounds pretty cheesy but if people are smiling they enjoy it more.  It would be nice to see more people dancing at gigs.”

Frankly though, its near on humanly impossible not to dance at a Metronomy gig when confronted by their poundshop-light adorned t-shirts (“Very simple to make, very cheap, under ten pounds”, apparently) and superbly grin inducing choreography.  “I think it’s really funny because with bands you either see ones which are overtly gimmicky or you see one that are not really letting themselves be enjoyable. I kind of just knew with the music I make, if you saw a band playing it straightforward live you wouldn’t get any of the spirit.  I’m happy for it to come a cross as a gimmick, coz it is, but it won't be like that forever.”

Despite their clever luminary trickery and off the wall sound, you get the impression Metronomy is in it for the long-haul. This is no day-glo flash in the pan stuff: insanely catchy, effortlessly transcending wankyness and Hoxton fads, the album and live shows give something incredibly listenable and intricately clever beyond the grins and toe-tapping. Whereas The Klaxons in their recent NME interview have now firmly adhered their brand of smiley-face pop to chemical quaffing, Metronomy have managed to retain clean white gloves in a scene littered with the crumbs of last nights disco biscuits. “Did you read the NME the other day? It’s like Smash Hits now, and they’re saying things like ‘k-hole’, I thought that was really dangerous. Every time we play gigs and people are obviously on drugs its like the most boring thing to watch. I don’t think I’ve ever associated the two to be honest.”

There’s no denying, however, that being lumped into the current wave of wide-eyed electronic sounds has given Metronomy a well-deserved push into our collectively grateful ears. “It’s a mixed blessing, it’s great because its your suddenly mentioned in the same sentence as other bands so people become more aware of you, but I don’t really wanna become involved in it. It’s obvious: if you let yourself become a nu-rave band you’re gonna last a few minutes. The way I see it is that I’ve been doing my own thing for a while and it just so happens there something else going on at the same time and you can link the two. But I mean ‘nu-rave’, what is it? Its such a shit name.”


Metronomy

On the subject of bizarre monikers, a word has to be said on Metronomy’s choice of song titles. ‘Love Song for Dog’ and ‘This Could Be Beautiful (It Is)’ are surely begging for some sort of ‘tortured artist’ style metaphorical explanation: tales of unrequited canine affections, perhaps? Musings on society’s sad preoccupation with aesthetics? Perhaps not. “‘Black Eye, Burnt Thumb’ is quite literal, coz when I wrote the main bit, I was out one night trying to impress a girl, and I was swinging a metal pole and hit myself in the eye, and got a black eye. When I wrote the beginning of it, it was after getting together with the girl. I was out and about celebrating and managed to set fire to my thumb. Some of them are literal and some are little phrases I get caught it my head when I’m on my own, when I’m lonely.” 

Don’t worry though; the aforementioned tortured artist isn’t really lurking behind Metronomy’s “jokey”, illuminated exterior.  Metronomy is in fact the lovingly nurtured baby of one man, Joseph Mount: it’s inevitable that a lot of time is spent alone with only a computer and keyboard for company. And for now at least, he wouldn’t have it any other way. “I mean at school like when they ask you to go into groups and someone be the delegator, I’ve always been really crap. I always think my idea is better. Especially if your doing something like music and you don’t really need anyone else you can just let yourself go.” 

Having been in rock n roll based bands before, and citing The Ramones on the land of self indulgence that is myspace, it may seem odd that Mount chose to move into his mesmerising brand of electronic eccentricities. “I think the only reason it ended up sounding more electronic was because the only things I had was a computer and a keyboard and things like that. I think that being in a band makes you realise that actually you’d quite like to be the boss. In the bands I’ve been in there were other song writers and I always had ideas, but it’s not really like your baby, you don’t really get much say.”

Right now, the future for Metronomy is looking brighter than the neon leggings that have infiltrated this spandex-worthy venue.  Having made possibly the most fabulously hypnotic, infectious and elating albums of the year, there are bands falling over their winkle-picker clad tootsies for him to remix their tunes. “I quite enjoy turning stuff I don’t really like into something I do. I wouldn’t mind doing quite a ‘big’ one. But I heard the vocal on a Robbie Williams song and i thought to myself no, that’s too far.”  Frankly though, Metronomy can turn down whoever he likes.  With a new album due for release early next year, the world is his oompah-glitch electro oyster. Maybe one day, pendulum will swing into the revolution of ‘nu-Metronomy.’ Catchy, no?

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